It has come to our attention that many Outlook 2013 and Office 365 users are having issues within synchronizing IMAP folders recently. This appears to be happening across all hosts due to a recent update that Microsoft has pushed out to all of its users.

What causes the issue?

This issue is caused by installing one of the following updates that have been pushed out by Microsoft on 11/12/13:

KB2837618 or KB2837643

If you have not already done so, please avoid this update for a bit until Microsoft corrects the issue. If you cannot avoid the update, we will provide you with further steps regarding a temporary fix for the issue.

What does this issue affect?

This issue with Microsoft Outlook 2013 and Office 365 will cause IMAP folders to not successfully synchronize, therefore inhibit your ability to receive new mail to your inbox.

How do I fix this issue?

There are a few ways to resolve the issue:

Uninstall the recent updates (KB2837618 or KB2837643)

One option is to remove the recent update that has been pushed out by Microsoft to Outlook 2013 and Office 365 users. To do so, complete the following steps:

  1. Open your Start menu and click visit your Control Panel.

  2. Click Programs and Features

  3. Click View Installed Updates

  4. Locate either the KB2837618 or KB2837643 updates and remove them.

Disable the "Show only subscribed folders" option in Outlook

There have been reports that the problem can also be resolved by removing the setting that states to show only subscribed folders in Outlook. To do so, complete the following steps:

  1. Under the "Folder" tab, right of the "Favorites" tab, click "IMAP Folders"

  2. Outlook should open a dialog box with IMAP folders.

  3. There is a checkbox that says, "When displaying hierarchy in Outlook, show only the subscribed folders." Uncheck that box.

  4. Force sending/receiving within Outlook and everything should synchronize up properly.

Changing the root folder path

Visit your Account Settings, then Advanced for the mail account that you are having trouble with. This can be located at one of the following:

  • Go to Change Account>More Settings>Advanced Tab

  • File>Account Settings>Account settings>Change...>More Settings...>Advanced

  1. In the Folders option, look for "Root folder path" and enter "Inbox".

  2. Save your settings and force a Send/Receive

We will keep this article updated as much as possible while the issue persists. If you have any further fixes that worked for you, let us know in the comments.

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n/a Points
2014-03-01 3:04 pm

Getting this error and this has caused alot of issues for me not receiving legal paperwork twice in a month

Did not have the updates listed and disabling subscribed folder instructions are not right

4,112 Points
2014-03-03 10:56 am
The solutions in this article as specific to these updates and are not meant to resolve all issues; only the ones caused by these updates that were pushed out previously. If you could clarify the specific issues you are having, I'll be happy to point you in the right direction.
n/a Points
2014-03-19 6:51 am

Hi JeffMa,

my imap inbox was working fine yesterday and i've come in today after a windows update and now my imap account wond send or recieve in outlook. 

I get an errors in folder .pst - I don't know what to do, i've tried everything.

Can you help?

4,112 Points
2014-03-19 7:45 am
Hello Byron,
Could you clarify what the specific error that you're getting is?
n/a Points
2014-03-19 8:52 am

The server doesn't respond and says that an error is at C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\

it was working fine yesterday and after the windows update KB890830 it's now not working - I'm in outlook, the folder is showing, but when i click on it i get a server error. 

I'm in a working office and everyone else is working fine - Very strange. 

4,112 Points
2014-03-19 9:04 am
Try running the Scanpst.exe tool. Instructions on doing so may be found at the following:

Repair Outlook Data Files (.pst and .ost)
n/a Points
2014-03-20 7:17 am

I seem to having the same problem after installing outlook 365 today for my wife.  Her gmail is synched and looked ok in the inbox.  But it is constantly synching. is that normal?

4,112 Points
2014-03-20 8:10 am
Hello Wilson,

If the inbox is quite large, it can take a while to synchronize. It should not be constantly syncing, but can sync quite often depending on your settings. It is also possible that it is a large inbox that simply takes a while to sync.
n/a Points
2014-03-25 1:45 pm

IMAP Messages won't send from Outbox, and none of the solutions here are working.

Messages WILL come in to the Inbox, but just won't send!

5,603 Points
2014-03-25 2:31 pm
Hello Kerri,

This article specifically deals with IMAP issues and Outlook which just deals with incoming messages, which it doesn't sound like you're having issues with at the moment.

We have another guide on problems sending mail that might be more helpful in your specific case.

More than likely you'll want to check if you're using port 25 for your Outgoing server, as this port could be getting blocked by your ISP. You would instead want to use either port 587 for non-SSL mail, or port 465 if you're securely connecting to the mail server over SSL.

Please let us know if you're still having any issues at all.

- Jacob
n/a Points
2014-03-29 5:48 pm

So far I can't get Outlook to recoginze sub folders AT ALL on my main email account, and it loses them regularly on the other two accounts.   I can't imagine using outlook regularly when it wont see my filed mail.

4,112 Points
2014-03-31 8:19 am
You may simply need to subscribe to those specific folders within your Outlook settings.
n/a Points
2014-04-03 2:42 pm

I did all the suggestions mentioned above except I could not find those updates on my pc. I am getting the following message

Your IMAP Server wants to alert you to the following: Folders cannot be created in a system folder. 


5,603 Points
2014-04-03 3:04 pm
Hello Michael,

If you couldn't find the updates listed above in the article, then you more than likely are dealing with a separate issue then what this article covers.

I found on the Microsoft website a post about creating subfolders with IMAP in Outlook 2013. It sounds like this isn't a specific Outlook issue, but more than likely related to your web host.

I couldn't find any account information on file with us, so I'm assuming you're having these IMAP issues with another web host. I would recommend seeing if you can login to a webmail interface in your web-browser to your email account and see if you can create a folder there directly on the server. Then in Outlook see if you can see that IMAP folder created on the server.

It sounds like possibly your IMAP server doesn't allow for IMAP folders to be placed inside of your Inbox folder. Instead you should try having your IMAP folders on the same level of your Inbox and see if you still have issues syncing them with the server.

Please let us know if that works for you.

- Jacob
n/a Points
2014-04-14 1:40 pm

Outlook performed an update in the past couple of days and when I opened it today, it required that I set everything up like a fresh install.  Now all of my subfolders and contacts are missing and the most recent date for everything is 4/14/2014 @ 13:10. The same time the config was performed.

4,112 Points
2014-04-14 1:45 pm
I'll be happy to update the article with more information on this recent issue. Do you happen to know the specific update that was applied? Were you able to find a resolution to the issue?
n/a Points
2014-04-14 3:56 pm

I recently upgraded to Windows 7 and Outlook 2013 and now my sent messages are not showing in the Sent Items file.  Is there a solution?



5,603 Points
2014-04-14 4:12 pm
Hello Robert,

Were you previously using the same email account setup on a different computer? It sounds like you might have possibly been using your local email folder to store your sent emails in, instead of storing them on the server-side via IMAP.

If so, then you would need to access your old email client and backup your sent email folder. Either to the server via IMAP and then pull it down in your new mail client, or backing it up locally to something like a thumbdrive and then restoring it to Outlook 2013

- Jacob
n/a Points
2014-04-15 3:45 am

Hi Jacob,

Have been reading with interest this conversation. I have the same problem - and none of the suggested solutions work. Having spoken to Microsoft I realise they don't have a clue either. My situation: I recently changed from XP and Outlook Express 6 (where, for years, the IMAP synchornisation worked beautifully in either direction) to Windows 8.1 and Office 365. Send/receive and synchornisation work only if the root path folder is tunrned to INBOX (otherwise send/ receive get stuck), but then you lose all the user-defined IMAP folders. (You can't create subfolders for the Inbox if  the root path folder is not empty.) I understand that the proobelsm didn't exist in Outlook 2010, but MS wouldn't provide me with a copy...!


10,582 Points
2014-04-15 1:04 pm
Hello Christoph,

The above article was written in response to an issue that Microsoft addressed in November of last year. The problem was caused by an update. If you're having a similar problem, it most likely has nothing to do with that issue unless you are using an version that was released at that time. Since you're using a January release, then you probably don't have this specific issue.

In regards to Jacob's response above, you have not confirmed if you were using an email account saved to a server versus your own computer. If you were using an account that was saved locally versus on a server, then you need to take the steps he suggested.

If you're not seeing USER-DEFINED folders in your IMAP account, you need to subscribe to them. So set your root folder to INBOX and then try subscribing to the folders. The process should be similar to the 2010 version of Office as described here. If you're still having problems, then you may need to work with Microsoft's technical support in further depth in order to resolve the issue.

Arnel C.
n/a Points
2014-04-18 10:00 am

I did all of the listed steps to find my incoming emails and i still can not find them. This is only happening on one out of my four email accounts. any suggestions? it sends emails ok ,but wont display the incoming emails

4,112 Points
2014-04-18 10:08 am
The solutions provided above are specific to a prior update that affected users several months ago and may not apply to all situations. In your situation, I recommend following our guide on subscribing to your inbox in Outlook.

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